The tech giant Google announced Tuesday that the next change of its Android operating system (4.4) will be called KitKat. Kit Kat, the chocolate candy bar with the known “Gimme a Break” jingle. Kit Kat packaging will show Android’s green robot mascot breaking a Kit Kat bar. Google has a history of naming versions of its Android OS after desserts — Cupcake, Froyo, Gingerbread and Jelly Bean have all made the rotation — but never has the company chosen a branded candy for its OS.
We don’t know exactly how Google came to choose the Hershey-owned candy over a more general dessert, like Key Lime Pie, but rest assured Google hasn’t violated any trademark restrictions. Google would only say, “KitKat has been a favorite candy on the team for some time, so for the K release, we asked if they’d be willing to lend their iconic candy bar to its name.” A Google representative confirmed to Mashable that “no money was exchanged” in the deal.
Google approached Hershey about six to nine months ago for permission to use the name, said Jennifer Podhajsky, vice-president of U.S. chocolate at Hershey, which licenses the Kit Kat brand in the U.S., while Nestle owns the worldwide brand.
Podhajsky said that Kit Kat’s jingle is a good fit for people taking a break to look at their smartphones or tablets. She added that the deal appeals to Hershey because Android hits the sweet spot of Kit Kat eaters, who are typically between the ages of 18 and 34.
“Kit Kat consumers are young, vibrant consumers of candy and chocolate bars, and that’s a nice match with Android,” Podhajsky said.
The Kit Kat name was unexpected since tech pundits have speculated for months that the next operating system would be called Key Lime Pie. Marc Vanlerberghe, director of Android Marketing, said the name was chosen because Kit Kat bars have been a “favourite go-to snack among the team since the early days of Android.”
The Android 4.4 Kit Kat system is expected to launch in October. The software is now running on more than 750 million smartphones and tablets throughout the world, making it the world’s most widely used mobile operating system.